Original Articles

  • CalHHS Secretary Extends Mask Mandate to Mid-February

    Mark Ghaly, M.D., MPH, California Health & Human Services Agency (CalHHS) secretary, has extended California’s indoor mask mandate by another full month. The masking requirement intended to combat the coronavirus pandemic now runs through February 15. While citing a recent surge in the state’s positivity rate to over 21 percent, Ghaly also noted data on […]

  • Fed-OSHA seeks suggestions for strengthening VPP

    Fed-OSHA is holding a stakeholder meeting July 17, in Washington, D.C., to discuss the future direction of its Voluntary Protection Programs. The agency’s aim is to “reshape VPP so that it continues to represent safety and health excellence, leverages partner resources, further recognizes the successes of long-term participants, and supports smart program growth.” Fed-OSHA is […]

Curated Content Articles of Interest from Around the Web

    Pot Grower Fined in Cannabis Dust Death

    Trulieve Fined in First Cannabis Dust-Related Death

    • Trulieve Cannabis was fined $350,000 last week by Massachusetts in connection with the January 2022 death of an employee at the weed purveyor’s Holyoke cultivation and processing facility.
    • Both state and federal investigators said the fatality was due to “occupational asthma” triggered by ground cannabis dust. 
    • It was the first of its kind on record in the U.S. cannabis industry, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.
    • “[The fatality] illustrates missed opportunities for prevention,” the CDC said in its Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report” on Nov. 17, 2034.
    • Florida-based Trulieve on May 29 signed a settlement with the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission.
    • The multistate operator was previously fined $14,502 by OSHA in connection with the death.
    • The company earlier this month shut its Massachusetts three dispensary locations, and said by year’s end, it will halt operations at the site of the worker’s death.
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    Repeat Rule Violator Illinois Contractor Cited Yet Again

    • An Illinois construction contractor  — cited four times by OSHA in 2023 and a total of seven times since 2020  — has again been found to be violating safety rules.
    • OSHA inspectors discovered employees of Maestro Construction working as high as 20 feet above the ground without adequate fall protection, the U.S. Labor Department said Wednesday.
    • The agency issued two willful, two repeat and two serious violations and one other-than-serious violation, with a proposed $264,407 in penalties. 
    • “Despite being cited seven times since 2020, this company continues to show a callous disregard for their employees’ safety, and we will continue to hold them accountable for their defiance of regulations,” said OSHA Area Director Jacob Scott in Naperville, Illinois.
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    Federal Agencies Offered OSHA Workplace Safety Seminars

    • Staff of U.S. government agencies are being offered in-person and virtual workplace safety seminars as part of OSHA’s Federal Agency Training Week, Aug. 6-8.
    • The 10 programs can help federal employees meet their annual requirement for professional development/training.
    • Registration is open now through July 19, according to the FedWeek Program website.
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